Talking To Teens


Talking To Teens

Talking to Teens is not the easiest. First you must find the appropriate time. Don’t come to a teen with an agenda or a to do list. This is a sure way your teen will head for the hills. Conversation will flow the best when they are natural. If you want to bring up items like chores, concerns, friends they are hanging out with, too much video time, etc you must find the right moment when they will be receptive to your feedback.

Don’t expect your teen to do what you ask if you cannot do it yourself. They are and have been watching you to set the example. How can you expect them to get out of the house and engage in life if all you do is sit at home isolated yourself?

Talking To Teens

Starting A Conversation


Approach in a judgment free manner. Letting your teen see that you are watching them and you notice the following:

  • A change in their peer group and hanging out less with the friends they used to be with.
  • That school grades and their work is suffering. Instead of yelling and demanding you may want to offer some extra help.
  • Their mood has shifted and appears darker.
  • They have lost interest in hobbies and things that once excited them.

Research and Ask Around

Go online and find helpful resources that equip you to deal with the specific issues you see in your teen. Know the facts before you approach your child. Sites like Cry for Help is solely for parents needing to gain knowledge and support.

Share Experiences of Your Own.

You may have mental health issues or disorders yourself. You see yourself in your teen and can recognize the symptoms. Remain positive and upbeat with your tone of voice. Try to remind them that if they are struggling with what appears to be a mental health issue is normal and very common among teens.

Talking To Teens

My Teen Wants to Talk To Me

Do The following:

Listen attentively

Really listen and stay in the present moment. Stop thinking about what your comeback remark is going to be. Silence the chatter in your own mind. This is a hard concept and one that needs to be practiced.

Ask if they know the answer

Offer the chance to just listen. They may already have an idea about what they want and need to address the issue. Do not be so quick to jump in and offer support and advice giving.

Learn from your teen

They may bring home information. If so then read it. Learn all you can about your child’s issue or condition. The website MHA of Central Florida’s website has plenty of information to assist you.

Keep it confidential and between you and your teen.

They are opening up and do not want their life made into a soap opera.

Normalize the situation

Try and assure your teen that they are not alone. Mental health issues such as anxiety, depression, self harm, perfectionism, etc are very common today among their peers. Give the hope. If you freak out then they will too.

Offer them counseling

Suggest a few names of therapists who specialize in working with teens. Give the opportunity to talk with someone who is not biased.

Talking To Teens

Give Them The Tools

Seek mental health counseling for your teen. You’re the parent so don’t be surprised if they do not understand how to open up to you. I have several years of experience working with teens. Read my approach to conducting therapy with teens. This affects the entire family. Support for you as the parent is vital. Call today and let’s get them the help they need.